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Last month the Obama Administration pushed to impose tariffs on solar panels that come from China. So apparently the folks in this Administration actually do think that some other things are more important than Global Warming. Solving the greatest crisis humanity has ever seen is only important if Americans do it, I suppose.

Let’s go back to two famous Supreme Court cases from the late 1930s, when the full-force of the Second New Deal was running wild on the country. In the cases of Alabama Power Co. vs. Ickes and the Tennessee Electric Power Co. vs. the TVA, the question of whether the courts should offer injunctive relief to state agencies from intervention by Federal authorities came before it.  In the Alabama Power case, the electric company sued the N.I.R.A. because the N.I.R.A. was making loans and subsidies available to municipalities to construct their own electric generation plants within their city limits. In the Tennessee Electric Power Case, the state of Tennessee requires all electric companies to operate with a permit from the state, which the new Tennessee Valley Authority did not obtain.

Read each case, they are interesting. In each case, the court took the side of the PWA and the TVA (i.e. the New Deal Agencies) on grounds that ultimately will preclude all challenges to the way the federal government spends money when the states themselves have given consent. In other words, both cases denied relief against competition from the federal government on the ground that there is no right to exist free from competition authorized by federal law.

I’ll repeat that, the court basically said, “too bad tough guys, I don’t care if government subsidies unfairly hamper you vis-a-vis the subsidized competitors, you have no natural right to exist free from any competition.”

Which is interesting in lieu of the defense the President is giving for wanting to protect our American solar panel manufacturers. Note too that this has implications for the way the Obamacare case will be decided this summer and also for whether Catholic elementary schools could ever sue the government for unfair competition.

Have a nice day.

One Response to “Strangely, the President Breaks Away from His Rooseveltian Roots”

  1. Harry says:

    Yeah, apparently. His constitutional analysis uses the loose word basically. Ho, hum. Loose reasoning, loose bowels, loose money, but let’s not be loose about trade — that is something that must be controlled, just like regularity. The Bastiat pills did not work.

    My question: why do the Chinese think Treasurys are such a great deal, yielding less than inflation? Why would they worry about tariffs on their stupid solar panels when they are screwing themselves big time financially?

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